Can we talk about how awesome Star Trek Discovery is?

Oh good, I thought it was just me. (It goes without saying, spoilers ahead)

I fell behind but I just watched Episode 6 “Lethe” and I’m falling more in love in this show and it’s characters every week. This show has more heart, more emotion and more depth in it’s first half season than most Trek’s have in their last season. It’s well on it’s way to being the best Trek series ever, whatever that means, which is nothing.

The thing is, Trek’s are really comparable, each one is series is so different. Each breaks it’s own ground and succeeds or fails in it’s own ways. Television production has matured significantly since the last series, Enterprise, and the producers are clearly trying to take full advantage of it while staying within what Star Trek is.

Those DISCO shirts

Oh my, running through the ship in those DISCO shirts. I died. It’s just fun and it’s breaking out into real like, just on a space ship. I know people were cringing a bit at Tilly but she’s so much more than comic relief. She’s not an airhead, she’s a science nerd who doesn’t control her words very well and lives with her heart on her sleeve. She would totally be watching Star Trek if it were on and if they had TV. She’s not all Star Trek fans, but she’s a lot of us and it’s exciting to that in the show. This feels new.

Admiral, Friend, Lover

I like Admiral Cornwell’s character. She’s a bit stiff still but maybe that will open up (if she survives �) as she grows into the roll or that’s just how they want to play her. This scene where the Admiral and Captain Lorca progress from business, to friends drinking, to bed is I think unprecendented in Star Trek. But even for a modern show I loved the ambiguity, was he using her to change the subject? Yes. Was she using him to see if he’s really changed in the most intimate and deep way? Yes. They’re both ruthless. I assume they were in the academy together but she’s an Admiral and he’s a Captain who’d be out on his tail by now if it weren’t for the war. So they have a complementary and complex power dynamic. It’s refreshing.

All the Issues

Star Trek has always embraced the social issues of the time and pushed a bit and I think ST:DISCO is taking that to a new level. Before this episode we’d already had discussion of:

  • gay relationships, at work no less
  • racial purity
  • religious radicalism In this episode we find out we’ve got a few more

  • Captain Lorca is essentially suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and hiding it
  • Tilly is going to deal with fitness, weight and healthy diet
  • Racism has been there already with the Klingons and with Michael Burnham, but the level of it on Vulcan against her impurity is new

    Spock Gossip!

Ever since that one word in episode three, “Amanda”, I’ve been overjoyed with little tidbits about how Burnham fits in with the existing lore and Spock in particular. This week we find out for sure that Michael is Spock’s older foster sister (well, older in development anyways, given Vulcan lifespan we don’t know if she’s older). We get more information about Spock and the Vulcan Science Academy. I’m still assuming we’re in the original timeline, but the events in the reboot movie about how Spock chose to skip the Science Academy and go to starfleet probably still happened the same way in this universe. Now that’s even more fraught since Sarek had made the impossible choice of his blood over his adopted daughter to go to the academy, only for Spock to make that choice moot. It adds depth to Sarek’s long story and Spock’s.